Since the all-star break, Minnesota has been on a historic run that has catapulted the Wild into playoff contention. From January 27th to right now, no team in the National Hockey League has been hotter than the Wild. While this season is just the latest one to feature a Wild resurgence, it certainly has the feel of being something special. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the top 5 numbers for the Wild during this tremendous stretch.
Number 5: 11
11, as in 11-1-1. That’s the Wild’s road record since the all-star break and is good for tops in the National Hockey League during that period. While the Wild has been somewhat pedestrian on home ice lately (with 3 losses in its last 5 home games) the team has been absolutely lights out on the road. The stretch includes 2 wins in Nashville against the Predators, who boast one of the leagues best records on home ice. The latest game was a 3-2 overtime thriller in which the Wild scored first then surrendered two goals to Roman Josi in the second period, only to come back and tie it late in the third on Charlie Coyle’s second of the night. 22 seconds into overtime, a blast off the stick of Matt Dumba gave the wild its second straight victory in Nashville.
Number 4: 8
8, as in an 8-2-0 record for Minnesota in its last 10 games. Impressive record considering the time of year it is. This is the time of year you get every teams best effort because so many teams are still fighting for points and trying to jockey for position in the log-jammed NHL standings. Included in Minnesota’s 8 wins are victories against Nashville (twice), Washington, St. Louis and the surging Ottawa Senators; pretty impressive stuff.
Number 3: 1441:03
That’s the number of consecutive minutes played by DevanDubnyk since January 27th, that’s a run of 24 games. This number can also be represented as 86,462 seconds or 24.02 hours. That’s right, an entire day.Dubnyk will add
to that total tonight when the Wild play host to the Washington Capitals at Xcel Energy Center; need I say more? Just insanity…
Number 2: .939 & 1.67
I’m employing the Mike Yeo strategy here in my numbers countdown and going with MORE DUBNYK! These two numbers are stats for Dubnyk during his run with the Wild. A .939 save percentage and 1.67 goals-against average in 28 consecutive starts, best in the NHL during that time. Overall, Dubnyk has a .929 save percentage and 2.08 goals against average, both second to Carey Price of the Montreal Canadiens. It would be pretty surprising if Dubnyk is not a finalist for the Vezina and Hart trophies. Not bad for a guy that got traded for a late 3rd round draft pick.
Number 1: 19
Drumroll please! The final number in the countdown — and perhaps the most important — is 19. As in 19 wins since the all-star break for an unbelievable 19-4-1 record in that time. Talk about a playoff surge. Perhaps most impressive is the amount of injuries sustained by Minnesota during that stretch. Jason Zucker was enjoying a breakout season having scored 18 goals during the year before he broke his clavicle on a hit from Vancouver Canuck, Luca Sbisa. During the same game, Ryan Carter suffered a shoulder injury and hasn’t played since; veteran winger Matt Cooke was injured during that same week and also has not seen the ice since.
So an impressive run indeed for the Wild. What are some other numbers you all have found interesting?
Nate has been a Minnesota Wild contributor at The Hockey Writers since 2014 and previously spent time covering the University of Minnesota Duluth men’s hockey team. For everything Minnesota Wild related, follow him on Twitter @natebauer.